Today it is common for family members to move to other countries, which can create unexpected complications when multiple languages are involved. When a will is written in a language that is not the native language of the country where it will be used, it must be translated into the language of the jurisdiction in which it will be submitted for legal purposes. The legal translation of a will is a crucial step in ensuring that the testator’s intentions are correctly understood and implemented in the distribution of their estate. Here are a few essential items to be aware of if you or your client needs a legal translation of a will written in another language.
The importance of a legal translation
A professional, legal translation of a will is important for several reasons. First and foremost, it ensures that the testator’s intentions are accurately conveyed to the parties involved in the distribution of their estate. It also helps to avoid confusion or misunderstandings that could arise from the use of unfamiliar language or terminology.
Additionally, in many jurisdictions, a legal translation is required by law for the will to be considered valid. For example, in the United States, if a will is written in a language other than English, it must be accompanied by a certified translation to be admitted to probate.
Choosing a qualified translator
Choosing a qualified translator is essential to ensure the accuracy and validity of the legal translation of a will. A qualified translator should be fluent in both the source language (the language in which the will was originally written) and the target language (the language into which the will is being translated).
Ideally, the translator should also have experience translating legal documents and be familiar with the legal terminology and conventions of both the source and target languages. Choosing a translator certified or accredited by a recognized professional organization, such as the American Translators Association, is also important.
Certification of the legal translation
In many jurisdictions, a legal translation of a will must be certified to be considered valid. Certification typically involves a statement by the translator certifying that the translation is accurate and complete to the best of their knowledge and belief.
Sometimes, the certification may need to be notarized or authenticated by a government agency or professional organization. It is important to check the requirements of the jurisdiction in which the will is being submitted to ensure that the certification is done correctly.
Cost and turnaround time
The cost and turnaround time for a legal translation of a will can vary depending on several factors, including the length and complexity of the document, the languages involved, and the qualifications and experience of the translator.
It is important to obtain a quote from the translator before proceeding with the translation to ensure the cost is reasonable and within budget. Similarly, it is essential to establish a realistic timeline for the translation to be completed, particularly if the will needs to be submitted for legal purposes within a specific timeframe.
In addition to the language and translation requirements, there may be other legal considerations to take into account when obtaining a legal translation of a will. For example, in some jurisdictions, certain formalities must be followed when executing a will, such as requiring a certain number of individuals to witness it.
If the will was executed in a jurisdiction with different formalities than the one in which it will be submitted, it might be necessary to obtain legal advice to ensure the will is considered valid in the new jurisdiction.
Choosing a trustworthy translation service
Finally, it is important to choose a trustworthy translation service when obtaining a legal translation of a will. This can be particularly challenging when dealing with a document as sensitive as a will containing personal and confidential information.
It is important to research the reputation of the translation service, including checking reviews and asking for references. It is also good to ask the translator to sign a confidentiality agreement to protect the testator’s privacy and their beneficiaries.
The Perfect Translation is the perfect solution if you need a legal translation of a will.
At The Perfect Translation, our professional translators combine their legal experience with language fluency to provide you with the most accurate translations of legal documents like wills. Don’t leave your important translation work to computerized bots or generalized linguists. Contact us today for a free quote and learn more about what makes The Perfect Translation the best place to get accurate legal translations.